Wednesday, 28 August 2013

The Conjuring - Phil's Five Words for Films

The Conjuring - Instructions: Take a pinch of 'Amityville', a cup full of 'The Exorcist', a sprinkling of 'Paranormal Activity' and some small pieces of 'The Orphanage'. Add in a some Hitchcock and claim that it is all 'Based on real events'. Give the whole thing to 'Insidious' director, James Wan to see what he makes with it. The result is a well made, slow-burner of a movie that has some good acting and a couple of good scares that manage to deliver moments of spine tingles. Patrick Wilson and Vera Farmiga play Ed and Lorraine Warren, a ghost-hunting couple called in to help the parents of five children who have a problem with things going bump in the night. The Warrens' were also the investigators in the classic 'Amityville' case that spawned sequels and remakes. There are many good performances, most notably Lili Taylor as the haunted mother and a couple of the younger actors also stand out. Having seen many-a horror

Tuesday, 13 August 2013

The Perks of Being a Wallflower - Phil's Five Words for Films

The Perks of Being a Wallflower Based on a novel and a screenplay by the director Stephen Chbosky, this angsty-teen drama has some good performances which help raise it above many 'coming of age' genre pieces. Set in a small American town in the early 1990s where popularity, proms and mix-tapes are more important than anything else that has ever happened, it follows a group of school kids as they struggle through their senior years. It is predominantly a film about belonging, friendship and dealing with life and death as a teenager and it will no doubt strike an emotional chord with many people that grew up during that period. Logan Lerman plays Charlie, a painfully

Thursday, 8 August 2013

End of Watch - Phil's Five Words for Films

End of Watch Starring Jake Gyllenhaal and Michael Peña as LAPD officers who work in South Central Los Angeles, End of Watch sets out to be a realistic fake-umentary about the lives and perils of a serving officer. For me however, it is nothing more than one of the most disappointing, depressing and over-rated films of recent times. The hand held camera POV device starts out as an interesting, if not-too-original, idea but soon becomes annoying and is used almost as an afterthought throughout the majority of the film. The dialogue is firmly rooted in the 'fu#*ing bro dude whatever' style and irritates more than it entertains. The representation of police work in parts of LA may well be gritty and hard edged but it also represents everything that is nasty and pathetically evil about modern societies – guns, drugs, gangs, ghettos and a lack of